Oliver Stone’s Filmmaker Son Supports a Nuclear Iran

Mark Tapson, a Hollywood-based writer and screenwriter, is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He focuses on the politics of popular culture.


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For a “very international-minded” guy who studied history at Princeton, Stone is remarkably uninformed about how despots are removed from power. It is almost always necessary to remove them by military force or being pushed, since they tend not to relinquish power simply out of the goodness and generosity of their own hearts.

Iran arrested filmmaker Jafar Panahi and banned him from making films because he criticized the regime. Another Iranian filmmaker, Mazdak Taebi, has been banned from Iran because of his anti-regime statements. Presumably Stone thinks these filmmakers are overreacting and should have waited for the regime to evolve at its own pace. “This is insulting,” Taebi said of Stone’s willful blindness. “So many people have died. People there are shaking. They’re scared. It’s a police system.”

Stone said that while in Tehran, he saw graffiti that read, “Death to America.” This seems like a rather straightforward declaration, but Stone’s interesting theory is that it was not meant to be taken literally. “Because it’s emotional,” he explained. “It doesn’t have the meaning you think it does. It’s not political expression.” He didn’t elaborate on what other meaning “Death to America” could possibly have, but he was quick to dismiss Americans who question his pro-regime interaction. “That’s stupid. There should be cultural dialogue with every country,” he said.

That sounds great in principle, but Stone is the ignorant one – the United States has been attempting to carry on a dialogue with the intransigent Iranian regime for decades – even during the years when George W. Bush was decried for his supposed lack of diplomacy. Iran is interested in dialogue with other countries only as a delaying tactic to keep them from interfering with its power-aggrandizing agenda. And Iran is interested in the work of only those filmmakers who are willing to publicly whitewash its domestic crimes and international acts of war.

Moving on to his own agenda, Stone declared, “I would like to introduce Persian culture and civilization to the West” through his future films. He could start by re-introducing Persian culture to the Muslim fundamentalists who rule the country, as Islam has a habit of obliterating the indigenous culture of any land it conquers. Since the Khomeini revolution of 1979, Iran’s Islamic theocracy has waged a systematic campaign of wiping out any trace of pre-Islamic Persian cultural heritage, including archaeological sites.

If Sean Stone truly cared about Persian culture, he would protest the regime’s erasure of it, as well as the violent suppression of the people suffering under its thumb. Or he can simply follow in his father’s footsteps and serve as another useful Hollywood idiot for the enemies of freedom and human rights.

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  • Chezwick_mac

    My God. The inexplicable mindset of a Hollywood Leftist…embracing a regime that persecutes women, gays and religious minorities as a matter of course. And why?

    For one reason: Because it is anti-American.

    • Juan

      It not anti american, it because the truth behind this, u know about islam from what u saw on television. How can u become christian even u dont know about jesus. Jesus is a muslim. More than that, Jesus never say that he is christian. Even word "christian" never mention in any bible. so sad u dont know about your religion but easy to condemn other religion…

      • smartzee

        Hoping it is Juan Lopez, my brother in islam. May Almighty bless you for the endeavour of standing up for the truth! Way to go, bother. Amen!

  • Mark-Vincent

    The world would be a better place without Mullah’s,The revolutionary guards,The Basij creeps,Supreme loser Kahmenei,Ahmedinejad,the Iranian intelligence service(and especially that in the closet gay head of intelligence guy),the moral police and most if the Iranian governement. It’s a big task to get rid of these creepy,sneaky losers,but it is nessesary if we want a safer and more harmonic world with real peace,modern lifestyles and progression towards a more stable and peacefull, safe and positive creative society with the outcome of survival of the human species!!!

    • smartzee

      FYI, just returning the "courtesy".
      The World at large would be better off without the "hollywoodian" hypocrisy, immorality, prostitution (to the highest paying job), corruption, lack of talent (except for the very few), greediness, lack of generosity, cut throats. The opposite is also true and you find it : Q: guess where?, A: in the muslim world!

  • oldtimer

    Boycott Hollywood. What is wrong with these people. Stick political correctness, and lets go for moral correctness!

    • Asher

      There are other things to do beside go to movies. These people will all fall in the end, just give it time. Most people reap what they sow.

  • StephenD

    Why would FPM bother posting this article? What makes you think anyone here cares one iota about the mindset of Oliver “twisted” Stone and his spawn? This took up space that could have otherwise been used for a worthwhile endeavor. Nothing against the Author Mr. Mark Tapson because he does great work. It's just that his talents are wasted, it seems, on such projects. I could have watched my fingernails grow in the time it took me to read this and it would have been as productive!!

    • http://marktapson.blogspot.com MarkTapson

      StephenD, you raise a great point. It's true that FrontPage readers like you already know that Hollywood is full of Useful Idiots like Stone or Matt Damon, etc., and they're easy for us to dismiss as such. But I write about pop culture a lot (like a Katy Perry piece I did recently) partly because I have one foot in Hollywood but mostly because I think those of us on the Right dismiss them TOO quickly and forget what a powerful, widespread impact pop culture has on people not just in the US but around the world. People like Perry and Oliver Stone and Damon and their work are influential especially with younger generations – if they weren't, dictators like Castro and Chavez wouldn't make a big deal of embracing them publicly. That's the "useful" part of Useful Idiots. Meanwhile filmmakers like Jafar Panahi are imprisoned or otherwise suppressed.

    • http://marktapson.blogspot.com MarkTapson

      Our enemies "get" that filmmakers shape perceptions. Sean Stone may be just a wannabe filmmaker now, but he's following in his father's footsteps and, thanks to that connection, has a shot at being a real Hollywood player. Even if all he ever does is make marginal documentaries about Iranian culture, he's serving a purpose for the enemy – and we let them get away with it at our peril.

      Thanks for the compliment, by the way.

      • StephenD

        Point well made Mr. Tapson. I appreciate your not taking me to the woodshed on this. Keep up the good work.
        Perhaps your having one foot in Hollywood as it were, you can apply some pressure to a few of the "good guys" and get some projects leaning in our direction. They should know there are the silent majority that would support such efforts still alive here in America.

        • http://marktapson.blogspot.com MarkTapson

          Trust me, there's a rapidly growing conservative movement in Hollywood who are well aware that there's a vast underserved audience out there hungry for entertainment that reflects their values. So we're working on it!

          • "gunner"

            one could wonder how sean stone would feel if iran's present rulers decided to grow a mushroom cloud in his backyard.

          • aspacia

            True,
            Sellek, Roger Simon, Klaven, Angie Harmon, the Fraser star, I forgot his name, Bruckheimer. Here is a list I Googled:
            Trace Adkins: Country Music Singer & TV Personality
            Danny Aiello: Film Actor
            Stephen Baldwin: Actor, Radio Personality
            Pat Boone: Singer, Songwriter
            Wilfred Brimley: Commercial Actor & Star of Cocoon
            Jerry Bruckheimer: TV & Film Producer
            James Caan: Legendary Film Actor
            Drew Carey: Game Show Host & Former TV Star
            Adam Carolla: Former Host of The Man's Show
            Tom Clancy: Espionage and Military Science Author
            Jon Cryer: Notable Film & TV Actor
            Robert Davi: TV & Film Actor
            Bo Derek: Model, Film & Television Actress
            Dale Earnhardt Jr.: American Race Car Driver
            Clint Eastwood: Academy Award Winning Film Actor & Director
            John Elway: Hall of Fame Quarterback & Super Bowl MVP with the Denver Broncos
            Sara Evans: Country Music Singer
            Lou Ferrigno: TV Actor (Star of The Incredible Hulk & King of Queens Guest Star)
            Mel Gibson: Film Actor & Academy Award-Winning Director
            Kelsey Grammer: TV & Film Actor, Star of TV's Long-Running Series, Frasier
            Angie Harmon: TV & Film Actor, Star of TV's Law & Order
            Elizabeth Hasslebeck: Former "Survivor" Contestant & Co-Host of The View
            Dennis Hopper: Actor, Director & Two-Time Academy Award Nominee
            Patricia Heaton: TV Actor, Female Lead in TV's Everybody Loves Raymond
            Naomi Judd: Country Music Singer, Actress & Author
            Lorenzo Lamas: TV Actor
            Heather Locklear: TV & Film Actress
            Susan Lucci: Emmy Award-Winning Actress & Soap Star
            Dennis Miller: Actor, Stand-Up Comedian & Political Commentator
            Chuck Norris: Legendary TV Actor
            Ted Nugent: Legendary Musician, Speaker
            Richard Petty: Seven-time NASCAR Champion
            Johnny Ramone (John Cummings), Legenday Musician, Founder of The Ramones
            John Ratzenberger: TV Actor, Voice-Over Personality
            Robert James "Kid Rock" Ritchie: Singer, Song Writer & Rapper
            Adam Sandler: Legendary Stand-Up Comedian, "Saturday Night Live" Alum & Hollywood Film Star
            Pat Sajak: Wheel of Fortune Game Show Host & Political Columnist
            Curt Schilling: World Series Champion & Former Phillies, Diamondbacks & Red Sox Pitcher
            Tom Selleck: TV & Film Actor
            Ron Silver: TV & Film Actor
            Jessica Simpson: Singer, Actress & TV Personality
            Gary Sinise: Academy Award Nominated Film Actor & TV Star
            Sylvester Stallone: Producer, Director, Writer & Legendary Film Actor, Star of Rocky & Rambo Films
            Ben Stein: Film Actor, Game Show Host & Political Commentator
            John Stossel: Investigative Reporter, Speaker
            Janine Turner: Film & TV Actor
            Jon Voight: Academy Award-winning Film Actor and Political Activist
            Bruce Willis: Legendary Film Actor & Two-Time Emmy Award Winner
            Lee Ann Womack: Country Music Singer
            James Woods: Noteable Film Actor
            David Zucker: Director of Airplane & Naked Gun Films

          • just me

            good luck !:)

  • http://msmignoresit.blogspot.com msmii

    I have been concerned by the current administration’s policies towards the Middle East. Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann on Friday expressed regret over the fall of US ally Hosni Mubarak “while President Obama sat on his hands." This sitting on his hands, as I have mentioned several times, goes back to the Iranian uprising in 2009.

    Earlier this year Obama attempted to put Israel on the US State Department’s list of State Sponsors of Terror; however, pro-Hamas Turkey is to chair an Obama backed counter-terrorism body. This panel is not to include Israel and is being done quietly, in the shadows of the UN General Assembly this week. Hillary Clinton calls this “smart power approach to counterterrorism,” and described the founding group as “traditional allies, emerging powers and Muslim-majority countries.” I call it another attempt to subjugate the power and strength of America to its enemies.

    There is also that little and far too under-reported “want” from the administration to put in a direct phone line to Tehran.
    http://msmignoresit.blogspot.com/2011/09/obama-ge

  • mrbean

    Why should this surprise us? His old man had his tongue up the A$$ of Ho Chi Minh when he made his anti american films.

  • pagegl

    Just like his dad, dumber than a box of rocks.

    • http://wanwidget.com/ Juan

      u know about islam from what u saw on television. How can u become christian even u dont know about jesus. Jesus is a muslim. More than that, Jesus never say that he is christian. Even word "christian" never mention in any bible. so sad u dont know about your religion but easy to condemn other religion…

      • pagegl

        And this just goes to show what happens when you make idiotic assumptions. Basically, I'm a-religious, so, I feel I can be an equal opportunity pain in the butt to any religion. It's just right now Islam is trying to reestablish its last attempt to conquer Europe; you know, the events that led to the Crusades as a means to slow if not stop the idiocy of Islam.

        I really do appreciate you doing the Capt. Obvious bit… of course Christian isn't mentioned in the Bible. The formal naming of the religion following the teachings of Christ did not happen until after events described in the Bible.

        And just to clarify another bit of misinformation from you Jesus was a Jew.

  • flyingtiger

    If he hates america so much and loves Iran so much, why doesn't he move there?

  • Asher

    These Ultra Left Hollywood LIberals can afford to attack America and its people. They don't suffer 1 iota for their hatred, but the rest of us suffer economically and our children will pay for their hatred. Can you imagine hating America so much that you would enable a Nuclear Iran..This is total insanity! I will never go to any of Stones movies again.

  • Ghostwriter

    The old saying is true here:"Like father,like son." In this case,Sean is as much as dipstick as his father ever was.

  • Chestertonian

    I admit to being confused when I read the headline. Support Iran's Nuclear ambitions? No way that Oliver Stone is old enough to be Ron Paul's dad. No way!

  • SAM000

    Ahmadinejad claims that the GOOD AMERICANS love him,
    Ahmadinejad Claims that he is the most popular leader of the world,

    A big part of the oil income is spent to white washing the Mullahs regime from the daily crimes in the daylight.
    This Mullahs regime even do not hidden his crimes, because he claims that the greatest Hollywood Filmmakers approve all his work.
    The regime shows stone's support several times in the Prisons to smash the resistance of the prisoners.
    The Iranian Filmmaker Jaffar Panahi never criticized the regime, he just showed the miser and injustice of the poor girls and women who are smashed under the this regime, he was arrested and condemned for ten years of jail.

    Our 30 years of experience shows us that nobody supports this regime for free, lefty or righty, they are all paid.

    Thanks and many thanks to the writer of this article "MARK TAPSON",
    I have my family murdered by this regime.
    I'm not the only one.
    Iran is an extermination CAMP.

    Mister Tapson you are doing an human job, please continue.

  • Max Hoffmann

    embarrassing. spoiled schmuck from an ivy league who didn't understand a thing.
    He and his father are officially oppressor fan, aka enemy of human dignity.

  • remi

    I am an Iranian. Just can say shame on him closing his eyes on what ahmadinegad and Iranian government do every day on their own country people. It's like instead of sentencing serial killer, saying he has the right to make a gun for himself. …USA should be happy having such a naive critics.